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Nursing Home Fined After Fatal Accident

November 20th, 2018

A nursing home in Buffalo, New York received the maximum fine following investigation on an incident where an 87-year-old resident died in a fall from a window. A detailed article on the investigation appears here.

A Tragic Accident

In June 2018, an elderly resident suffering from dementia died after falling 34 feet from his room in Buffalo’s Emerald South Nursing Home. The man—who had fashioned a makeshift rope—fell to his death while attempting to escape through his third-floor window. The resident was diagnosed as lacking decision-making capacity.

A Critical Report

While a nurse at the home originally identified the man as an escape risk, inspectors from the New York State Health Department concluded Emerald South did not take sufficient steps to protect the man. The State fined Emerald South Nursing and Rehabilitation Center $10,000—the maximum the state can apply—for violations related to his death. The man’s psychiatric evaluation documented that he believed he was in jail, but it did not include methods to observe his whereabouts.

A Failure to Protect

The facility’s Director of Maintenance told state inspectors the facility administrator and nursing staff were warned the man had repeatedly tampered with bolts that prevent the window in his room from opening. Inspectors found the nursing home’s care plan for the deceased did not include a plan to prevent escape—or fit him with a bracelet to sound an alert if he wandered.

The Health Department report alleged Emerald South impeded their investigation by obstructing access to staff. The home’s attorney told inspectors no interviews with staff could be conducted unless the attorney was present. The state said the delay violated regulations—and recommended the federal Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services also fine the facility.

We’ll Fight for Your Loved One

If your loved one has suffered abuse or neglect in a nursing home or other long-term care facility, call the experienced North Carolina nursing home abuse attorneys at Henson Fuerst today at 866-677-0420.

If you are concerned about the treatment your loved one is receiving, contact the legal team at Henson Fuerst today. Call 866-677-0420 or complete a free initial consultation form. We have a long history of advocating for the rights of people suffering mistreatment—and will treat your case with respect and compassion.

When you call, you will speak with one of our experienced Raleigh nursing home abuse attorneys. They will investigate every detail of your situation at no cost to you and fight hard to protect your rights. At Henson Fuerst, you will never pay an attorney’s fee up front, and you owe us nothing unless we recover for you.

Call Henson Fuerst, Because Your Case Matters